Newsletter Archive

E-News Issue #62

13 June 2003

Hair Dryer

We now have a few 12V hair-dryers. They are rated at 100 Watts.

Video & VCD

Peter Pedals long time contributor to Earth Garden Magazine on renewable energy generation issues has teamed up with a local Lismore video producer Mark Jago from Shoestring Budget Productions to create The Gaia Energy Show. This is a short 18 minute video designed to introduce the layman to the world of renewable energy in an entertaining & easy to understand format.In the show Peter explains the basics of a variety of systems and strategies designed to harness electrical power from nature. The first port of call is a Micro Hydro system installed on a property ten minutes outside Nimbin, which harnesses the energy of water. This property is a multiple occupancy, which presently has 3 Micro Hydros, each supplying power to the nearest dwelling(s). The flow from each Micro Hydro fills a water tank, which then supplies water to a Micro Hydro and fills another water tank at a lower altitude. These Micro Hydros have been running continuously for over 15 years. Peter explains how the system was installed and also interviews local homeowner Terry about the ins & outs of living with renewable energy. Terry has incorporated a solar array into his system compliment his Micro Hydro.The show also touches on current trends & global strategies to reduce our dependence on coal fired power stations and also explains in general terms the cost of installing a variety of systems and what those systems can provide in terms of power consumption. The Video is available in either VCD format which will play in both Computers and DVD players & VHS.

Circuit Breakers

We have replenished our stocks of circuit breakers in 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 16, 20, 25, 32, 40, 50 and 63 Amp sizes.

Circuit Breaker Boxes

We have a very economical range of 2, 4, 8 and 12 Pole.


Austar is a pay television option in Australia and New Zealand, which is delivered by satellite to a receiver dish on your roof (about 70cm diameter) to a decoder, which is connected to your TV. Am Austar technician can complete the installation in about 1-hour. The ‘basic’ service gives you some 29 channels including ABC & SBS plus 25 radio channels. I believe it is similar (identical?) to FOX TV. The reception/picture and sound quality on all channels can only be described as ‘perfect’ – no snow, waves, shadows etc!Well, now that I have the ad out of the way – lets look at the electrical requirements! If my TV is the only load on my SA22 Selectronic 1600W inverter, it draws 3.6A @ 25 volts and 3.8A with the Austar decoder on. When measured with a 30A resistive load on the inverter, the TV on its own draws 3.0A and 4.0A with the Austar decoder on. So to conclude, I would suggest the decoder would use between 5 to 25 watts depending on the efficiency of your inverter and on the other loads being run on the inverter. The efficiency of the Selectronic inverter, even running at around 5% of its capacity is quite remarkable! In my case, the TV is often the only night time load on my inverter, so the extra 0.2 amp required by the decoder is quite insignificant! Incidentally, the compliance label on the decoder suggests the maximum power is 0.35A @ 230V (84 watts) and the label on my TV suggests 78 watts.

Boiling Water

An electric jug is not usually recommended on a solar system, as they require quite a lot of power. Most electric jugs are 1.5 to 2 litres in size and are rated between 1600 and 2200 watts. I managed to locate a small electric kettle at Kmart, which was rated at 1250 watts. It holds one litre (4 coffee cups). The model was a Kambrook KE9.Using my 1600 watt Selectronic SA22 inverter it used 1355 watts (54 Amps @ 25 Volts). With my water at 17C it took three minutes to boil 500ml or 5.5 minutes for one litre. Total power used to boil one litre was 5 Ah @ 25 volts.

Cheers from Dave and all the RPC crew.

Dave Lambert (Director)

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We install solar systems in Northern NSW and Southern QLD.

Gold Coast (from Coolangatta to Southport), Nerang and Hinterland (Beaudesert) and out West (Warwick, Stanthorpe, Killarney)

Northern NSW (Tweed Heads to Iluka, including Evans Head, Byron Bay and Ballina); the Far North Coast Hinterland (Yamba via Lismore to Murwillumbah) and out West (Casino to Tenterfield, including Drake and Tabulam, as well as Woodenbong and Bonalbo)

We also have sales agents in
Grafton:contact Andy Wilkinson directly on 0409 508 144, and
Tenterfield:contact Diamond J Legend directly on 0425 769 444.